All day long people have been asking, “What possibly could have possessed you to tell that story?” Trust me, I know. It is a doozy. And I must admit– thank God my parents were cremated and not buried; they would probably be rolling over right about now.
I have a few reasons for telling this story:
1. It is an overtly embarrassing moment in my life.
2. It is funny. If I take my overtly embarrassing moment and I laugh at it, I can forget how disturbing it seemed and look at it for what it is: comical.
3. Yesterday was actually the sixth anniversary of my mother’s passing. I started yesterday’s blog eulogizing, and then I realized it seemed maudlin. As much as her passing six years ago was an unexpected event and difficult for years to come, I am actually in a really good place. I have grieved. I have to believe that any unfinished business or anger we felt for one another has been replaced by forgiveness and love. Thus, I wanted to share a story from which we both, in retrospect, got a laugh.
When I think about my mother, I think about:
*A smart woman who lacked common sense. She could figure out PI to forty digits, but when we were shopping, you better make sure she showed up at the checkout counter with the right cart. How many times did she leave her cart at the end cap and then walk down the aisle to peruse the selections. Not thinking, she would toss whatever was in her arms in the nearest cart and then push it away. Unloading the cart onto the conveyor belt, she would be perplexed, “I didn’t buy Hungry Man dinners. Where did this Tuna Helper come from? Oh Honey, this isn’t our cart.” More than once we had to exit the line to find our actual cart.
*A woman who I could play backgammon with for hours. We were both ridiculously competitive, which made our tournaments that much more fun.
*A woman who would nurse me back to health, no matter if it was the common cold or full-blown pneumonia. She would make me soup or tea and rub my aching back until I fell asleep.
*A woman who trusted me. She said to me, “You have my trust until you give me a reason not to trust you.” She gave me confidence, a sense of autonomy, a sense of self.
*A woman with a sense of humor. “Well, you ruined that one.” How could she not have a sense of humor saying something like that?
I would love to hear her voice, hear her laughter, watch her fawn over the girls. Luckily, I have memories that give me these opportunities. I miss her, but she is with me everyday.